Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Base Camp

Feeding Time
The end of the day, and the fun continues; dogs and gear get unloaded and situated; feed pans filled and dispersed; fresh batteries installed in GPS transmitters; e-collars and tracking collars on chargers; truck gets fueled-up; ice for the coolers; more food and beverages purchased; doctoring of dogs and hunters as needed; the list goes on......
We were fortunate to be at a location where fuel, food, and accommodations are all available, and where the proprietors cater to a lot of bird hunters in the fall and winter and understand the kind of baggage we bring with us. We did make sure to clean-up after the dogs immediately, and fitted the barkers with their collars; trying to keep our presence as low-key as possible, and not taking things for granted.
The proprietors of these rural destinations are providing us with a great service and we appreciate them being there. By cleaning up after ourselves, and leaving them with a good impression of who we are, we hope they will be accommodating to us again in the future.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Crown Jewel

Chukar Partridge - Red-legged Devil

End of the Hunt

Abbi drinking, and Holly with Gertie
We got into eight coveys, and got all the dogs hunted this day. At the end of the hunt we felt like we had ridden a stage of the Tour de France; a lot of calories were burned and everyone was tired and a little sore. Back at the truck we had more water and treats for the dogs, and cheese, crackers, and leftovers from dinner the night before for us. Good stuff!

Friday, February 22, 2019


Stake-outs are a great option when weather and ground conditions allow for a good spot to get the truck off the road; in the late season a nice dry wide-spot is often hard to find. The stake-outs give dogs that would otherwise be crated an opportunity to stretch their legs and lay in the sun, recover from an earlier hunt, relieve themselves, and get watered-up and fed. The stakes should be kept far enough apart so that dogs can't get tangled in each others chains; this could be disastrous, if not deadly. Each of my stakes has a 30-inch chain on it, and I generally space the stakes about 7-feet apart. With that chain length, and that distance between stakes, dogs can generally just touch noses or paws.  Dog stools are picked-up as generated, which generally occurs within the first ten minutes of being staked-out after the morning ride to the grounds. Bring along a shovel to scoop the poop, and to fill any holes your dogs may dig while stake-out.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Arizona quail

I spent the last 4 days of bird season in SE Arizona hunting Mearn's quail with Pete and two of my dogs - Cody and Buddy. We had a great time and found (some) birds.

I also found a house that I made an offer on, The offer was accepted and we are proceeding to close in Spring. The house abuts the Coronado National Forest and includes about twenty acres of rolling oak savanna. looking forward to spending a lot more time in Arizona.

Cody ready to start  hunting

Sunday, February 17, 2019


Meg and Jill

These two pups had six covey finds in two hours, and covered a bunch of ground on fairly steep terrain. They were DONE! at the end of the hunt. Both pups are holding for the flush and chasing when birds are in the air. Before next season we plan to have them steady to wing and shot.
I like to line my crates with grass hay because, the dogs can burrow in it to stay warm at night, it provides a lofty layer for a dog to lay on after a hunt or while travelling, and it's relatively dust free. You can tell by the disposition of these two that they are perfectly content to be where they're at.....

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Geared Up

Ready to unload dogs for a hunt
The truck was loaded with gear and dogs for our last excursion of the season, four days of hunting in the outback; chukar country. The weather was perfect; cool in the mornings (low 20's) and mild in the afternoons (low 50's); blue skies from dawn till dusk. Green-up from the precip and sunshine of prior weeks made feed plentiful, and sign was fresh in locations were not much had been seen earlier in the season.
We had 6 dogs loaded in crates in the back of the truck, under the canopy, along with our food and dog gear; one more dog in a crate in the back seat along with our personal items, and a puppy loose in the cab.
Seven bird dogs is just about right for a four day hunt; 3 braces a day, approximately 2-hrs each. Six hours of solid hunting each day. On an average day hunters averaged 7-10 miles on the ground; a dog in a two-hour hunt would cover twice that! Amazing! Dogs that were hunted early the first morning would be fresh and ready to go the following morning after being well fed, rested, and doctored; that same prescription goes for hunters. Ibuprofen and Carprofen containers, and wine bottles, were relieved of their fair share of the elixers they contained....